Date: Sun., Dec. 16, 9:15 & 11:15 a.m., Sanctuary. Worship Leader: Director of Music & Arts/Worship Coordinator Laura Weiss. Music: Combined choirs and orchestras from UUCF and the UU Congregation of Rockville. Religious Exploration: RE classes in session for age 2-Grade 12. Preschool, Middle School and High School begin and end in class. At 9:15, Kindergarten-Grade 3 begin in the Chapel and end in class. At 11:15, Kindergarten-Grade 3 begin in the Library and end in class. At both services, Grades 4-6 begin in the Sanctuary and end in class. Child care for infants from 6 months to children 3 years old will be available in the Program Building. The Sanctuary Nursery will be open for parents caring for newborn infants.
Winter Solstice Service
Sat., Dec. 22, 7:30 p.m., Sanctuary. Haunting and beautiful melodies with Munit Mesfin, Sarah Jebian, Cami St. Germain, Carol Campbell, Beth Trivette, John Graham, Andre Enceneat (from the Uptown Vocal Jazz Quartet) and others give this Winter Solstice Service a tranquil and mystical tone.
Advent: Finding a Stillness
Dec. 3, 2018. By Assistant Minister Rev. Sarah Caine. Yesterday marked the first day of Hanukkah as well as the first day of Advent this year. One, the celebration of a miracle and a way to visually say “still here, still worshipping.” The other, anticipating a miracle amid the feeling that the world is ending. I have celebrated both of these holidays at different points in my life. Recently, Advent has been important to me – even as someone who doesn’t identify with Jesus as the sole source of salvation. Advent was introduced to me in seminary, by a Catholic woman priest. Now, I make a point of having candles to light and readings on hand. Advent is a time to slow down and inventory the pieces of me that aid or distance me from the spark of the divine within. It’s an opportunity to let go of habits that do not serve me or the greater good while remembering that there is a hope beyond what I can comprehend. My current go-to authors for reflections at this time of year are Jan Richardson and Richard Rohr – contemplative Christians who have a way with words that draws me out of the hectic pace of the day and into a moment of re-connecting. I take their Advent books and read the daily reflection. Sometimes, I read the portion of the Christian bible those who follow the Christian Lectionary* are reading – connecting with traditions beyond my own and finding wisdom in words from people who lived and struggled and celebrated so many years ago. I invite you to find stillness in this season before Yule, before Christmas. A stillness that can help you stay anchored while the pace of the holidays beckons you to do more and experience more. Rest in this time of the threshold, knowing there is hope beyond what you can comprehend, that you are a part of it and you have the choice to let go of that which does not serve you. Blessing the Door First By Jan Richardson, from “Through the Advent Door: Entering a Contemplative Christmas” let us say a blessing upon all who have entered here before us. You can see the sign of their passage by the worn place where their hand rested on the doorframe as they walked through, the smooth sill of the threshold where they crossed. Press your ear to the door for a moment before you enter and you will hear their voices murmuring words you cannot quite make out but know are full of welcome. On the other side these ones who wait — for you, if you do not know by now— understand what a blessing can do how it appears like nothing you expected how it arrives as visitor, outrageous invitation, child; how it takes the form of angel or dream; how it comes in words like How can this be? and lifted up the lowly; how it sounds like in the wilderness prepare the way. Those who wait for you know how the mark of a true blessing is that it will take you where you did not think to go. Once through this door there will be more: more doors more blessings more who watch and wait for you but here at this door of beginning the blessing cannot be said without you. So lay your palm against the frame that those before you touched place your feet where others paused in this entryway. Say the thing that you most need and the door will open wide. And by this word the door is blessed and by this word the blessing is begun from which door by door all the rest will come. *A lectionary is a book or listing of scripture readings appointed for Christian or Judaic worship on a given day or occasion.Read More >>>